Rihanna x ANTi: One Year Later


One year later and Rihanna’s eighth studio album is still in rotation. The long awaited release of ANTi built up a sort of anxiety for fans, as she released teaser singles like her collaboration with Kanye West and Paul McCartney on “FourFiveSeconds” and her single “BBHMM,” just for her to then go on another hiatus. She also had an eerie promotion with Samsung with her multiple ANTi virtual rooms that had secrets to unlock for clues about the album. We absolutely didn’t know what to expect at all.

When ANTi dropped, there were so many mixed reviews. Some critics saying the build up was too much for what was released, and then there were people like me who appreciated the layers and sincerity of it all. Let’s not deny that “Work” still jams a year and some months later. And then there are the little details like which version of visuals for “Work” you like more. Hold on, I’ll refresh your memory.

This album seemed like what a passion project is to the average nine to five worker; There’s always more to a person than you may know. The entire ANTi album was a deep cut of all sorts. There were so many genres and moods it was almost hard to keep up, but it was still pleasant to listen to. Rihanna was breaking down that transparent pop/mainstream barrier that she’s had on her for so long.

So much so that last year, MTV awarded her for their Video Vanguard award, which after brief review, I realized the growth and how much she did deserve it. She’s finally at the point, in my opinion, where her true artistry can come to fruition without the pressure of mainstream on her back. I also feel like there is way more music to be revealed, but only time will tell!

Get into My Top 5 Songs from the album, that aren’t heavily played on the radio, and why:

“Consideration” – An instant classic as soon as the beat drops. SZA and Rihanna’s voices blend well  on this track and both of their mottos of always keeping it ultra real is what anyone needs on any day to keep them going. Shoutouts to the bass on here, too!

“James Joint” – Although short, this airy, cotton candy ballad was exactly what I needed. The dysfunctionality in a relationship explained in a one minute song in such a nonchalant way almost makes the song come to life and you can envision what it looks like. As James Fauntleroy is my favorite composer of just about everything, this song was bound to be listed as my favorite.

“Higher” – Another short song, but this song reminds me of one of those nights you’re just in your feelings and sing your heart out as loud as you can. This vulnerable, brash track always gives me goosebumps because face it, we’ve all been there at least once.

“Yeah, I Said It” – A smooth, seductive, dirty talk song always does the trick. BiBi Bourelly, who is credited as a writer on this track, has the capability to sway people to emote how she is and I feel that through this. Also, this is the bad gyal Rih Rih I think we all love.

“Same Ol’ Mistakes” – Although originally Tame Impala’s record, I love that she didn’t spin it too much and just added her vocals. The song in itself is greatt and for her to appreciate that makes me appreciate her more.


What are your favorites? Let me know!

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